Becoming Madame Mao
by Anchee Min
From the author of the international bestseller Empress Orchid comes the stirring, erotically charged story of the woman known as 'the white-boned demon' - the ambitious wife of Chairman Mao whose actions led to the death of millions in the Cultural Revolution. From the young, unwanted daughter of a concubine, defiant in her refusal to have her feet bound, to the wayward, beautiful actress on the stages of Shanghai, to the ruthless, charismatic partner of the great revolutionary leader, Mao Zedong, Anchee Min moves seamlessly from the intimately personal to the broad sweep of world history in this fascinating portrait of an extraordinary woman driven by ambition, betrayal and a desperate need to be loved. Finely nuanced and always ambiguous, Min penetrates the myth surrounding Madame Mao with passion and sensitivity to pain a surprising picture of one of history's most vilified women. Rich with compressed drama and all the lyrical poetry of great opera, Becoming Madame Mao is a startling and moving achievement.